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President Trump to Announce New Cuba Policy

20 June 2017, 04:43 | Max Haynes

President Donald Trump is planning to make good on his campaign promise and travels to Miami Friday to announce his intentions to reverse the changes to Barack Obama's Cuba policy, by setting guidelines for business, severely handicapping their trading endeavors.

The new Cuba policy will prohibit transactions with businesses controlled by the Cuban regime, will only allow Americans to travel to Cuba as a part of a tour group, and reiterate the importance of extraditing fugitives, according to senior administration officials who briefed members of the press Thursday.

But even as he curbs Obama's détente with Cuba, Trump will stop short of closing embassies or breaking off diplomatic relations restored in 2015 after more than five decades of hostility, USA officials said.

Trump's policy aims to shift the flow of US money from the Cuban military that controls much of the economy to the emerging private sector.

President Trump plans to roll back some of President Obama's opening to Cuba on Friday while leaving other changes - including the embassy in Havana opened two years ago - intact. Additionally, travel and money sent by Cuban Americans could continue unaffected.

Obama's policies reflect the fundamental belief that political change on the island will come by empowering the private sector in Cuba, like those businesswomen.

Commercial flights, which resumed for the first time in 50 years last summer, will still continue between the USA and Cuba. Marco Rubio, considered a key participant in the decision-making.

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Under Trump's order, the Treasury and Commerce Departments will be given 30 days to begin writing new regulations and they will not take effect until they are complete. The pro-business leaders said travel and trade with Cuba boosts American businesses and spread free market ideals to the island.

But, facing pressure from USA business and some of his fellow Republicans to avoid turning back the clock completely in relations with communist-ruled Cuba, he also will leave intact many of Obama's steps toward normalization.

However, traveling to Cuba in the future is expected to again become more hard under changes imposed by the Trump administration.

His backers, including prominent Miami Cuban-Americans, implored the Trump administration to give existing policy more time to play out.

Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa: "It appears that the Trump changes would subject Americans to a lot more bureaucratic red tape and complicate travel to Cuba".

But travelers could see stepped up enforcement when they return to the U.S. They are required to maintain full schedules and keep detailed logs while in Cuba - something that is rarely checked. In this photo, Cubans watch the TV broadcast of the inaugural ceremony of Trump, from Havana, Cuba, Jan. 20, 2017. Fin formerly worked as the Miami Bureau Producer for Fox News Channel where he covered Florida Politics & Latin America. The American people should be able to exercise their fundamental right to travel without political interference from the federal government.

A Morning Consult poll released by the group Engage Cuba earlier this week said that 65% of voters surveyed support Obama's Cuba policy, including 64% of Republicans.



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